Unbounded Vistas: Artists Interpret the Northern California Landscape

Jun 28 - Aug 17, 2003

The Hearst Art Gallery is pleased to present its first juried landscape exhibition, giving the Gallery the opportunity to showcase many of Northern California's fine contemporary landscape artists. Within a genre that is centuries old, today's artists still manage to find fresh visions of the environments in which they live, work, and play.

Guest juror Terry St. John selected sixty-two works from more than 300 entries. "Terry St. John, landscape painter, curator, professor of art, was a perfect choice to select the exhibition," according to Hearst Art Gallery director Carrie Brewster, "given his years of experience in the field. His own boldly colored, expressive landscapes reflect the dual influences of the Bay Area figurative painting movement and his admiration for the plein air artists of the Society of Six, two of the traditions that inform a significant portion of Northern California landscape art."

Selected Artists

Mel Adamson, Lee Michael Altman, David Barnard, Nikki Basch-Davis, Ruth L. Beeve, Charlotte Britton, Jim Caldwell, Jerome E. Carlin, Robert Chapla, Christin Coy, Jessica Dunne, June Felter, Pam Glover, Linda Grebmeier, Anthony Holdsworth, Mitchell Johnson, William Keland, Connie Kirk, Paul Kratter, Louis LaBrie, Beryl Landau, Debra Beck Lennox, Carolyn Lord, Stephen Luce, Peter Najarian, Will Noble, Chuck Overton, Mary Parisi, Richard L. Perri, Robert Poplack, Ryan Reynolds, Adele Richert, Lynn Sondag, Anne Subercaseaux, Claire Thorson, and Donald "Mac" Warrick.

Juror's Statement

"I was very pleasantly surprised by the entries; stylistically, they were all over the map. I selected works that invited a return look. The exhibition includes some small abstract paintings, a large wall piece, a composite piece on masonite. There are also rural and urban landscapes in the exhibition, although I am not interested in the specific location, but rather what is created from the landscape."

"The nature of landscape painting is to be traditional. I came into the judging hoping to show a different approach to the landscape, a different slant from what one usually sees. I was looking for artists who did not report on the landscape at hand, but transform it to use it to make something new."

"The painting process itself is always interesting to me; in that sense, landscape painting is no different than figurative or abstract painting. It really is purely about paint. I like to see an artist who can maintain control even while working with juicy, sloppy paint. I wanted to avoid art that looks the same. Something a little bit different would make me take a second look. I liked pieces that were out of the traditional format: the biggest surprises among the entries were the nice, large works, especially because most artists have difficulty with large format landscape painting."

Juror's Biography

After graduating from U.C. Berkeley with a degree in sociology, St. John studied with James Weeks at San Francisco Art Institute. He later received an M.F.A. from California College of Arts and Crafts before joining the staff of the Oakland Museum as curator of modern painting. He was also a professor of art at College of Notre Dame, and the director of the Outdoor Painters Project at the University of California at Santa Cruz.

The exhibition was organized by Hearst Art Gallery registrar Julie Armistead.

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Contact: Heidi Donner (925) 631-4069 or hdonner@stmarys-ca.edu